By Ajaya Kumar Vemulapati
The educational horizons of the new generation in India have widened considerably. It is exciting to note the rising percentage of young students who are choosing to study abroad and leave their mark at international universities. Southern Europe has become a particularly popular destination for these students with its rich cultural history and exceptional universities.
Italy is one such nation that is proving to be a boon for international students. From the Alps in the North to the beaches in the South, there is no dearth of natural wonders in the country. Because of its cosmopolitan atmosphere and diverse culture, studying in Italy will offer youngsters an opportunity to widen their perspectives and truly become global citizens.
Established in 1902, Bocconi University, a private institution in the heart of Milan is an attractive option for those interested in business, management, or the humanities fields. The president of the university is Mario Monti, an Italian economist who was the Prime Minister of Italy from 2011-13, and the rector is Gianmario Verona, an established scholar himself. Bocconi’s school of business management also has an excellent Asia Centre in Mumbai, which extends the global nature of the programme.
Milan is an incredible city to live in, known for its fashion, food and architectural delights. It’s especially wonderful for students with many esteemed universities in town, there’s a huge variety of student events and affordable places to go. The Bocconi campus is fully integrated into bustling urban life. It’s just 10 minutes of walking away from downtown Milan and about 20 minutes from the jewel of the city, Duomo de Milan — the famous cathedral church of Milan that is a historical wonder of its own right.
Bocconi University’s Social Sciences faculty is of the highest quality. There are numerous interesting courses that blend economic thinking and real-life application such as ‘Economics and Management for Arts, Culture and Communication’ and ‘Economics and Management of Innovation and Technology. The MBA programmes are also highly renowned and the recently added Masters in Data Science and Business Analytics holds much promise.
Professors in Bocconi are extremely respected and many seminal textbooks and concepts have originated from faculty at this institution. The university boasts of 20 permanent research centres, with 200 international and over 300 national publications yearly. The student to teacher ratio is maintained at 9:1.
Tuition costs about 12,000-14000 euros a year but Bocconi regularly awards merit scholarships for both their Bachelor’s and Master’s courses. Living costs would usually amount to 1000 euros a month, and there are opportunities for jobs on campus as a research or teaching assistant. Of course, a study permit in Italy also allows students to work part-time, for up to 20 hours a week, outside of campus.
Indian students are slowly waking up to the excellent educational possibilities in Italy and making their way to universities like Bocconi. About 20% of the student demographic is international and to ensure that foreign students settle in smoothly and understand Italian conventions, the university offers seminar sessions on everything from taxation to enrolling into the public healthcare system. Most courses are offered in both English and it is mandatory for international students to learn Italian to encourage cultural integration.
There are a variety of social and extracurricular options with clubs based around topics such as business, investments, sports, wine, and chess — to name a few. The university is especially exciting for anyone interested in athletic endeavours. The recently inaugurated Sports Campus houses state-of-the-art facilities: notably, a 50m Olympic swimming pool, two basketball courts which have been used by professional Milan basketball teams for practice, a well-equipped gym, and a futsal ground. Emma Twigg, the recent Olympic rowing gold medallist is an alumna of Bocconi and so is the retired footballer Clarence Seedorf.
The university focuses on giving its students hands-on experience whenever possible. There are regular seminars with professionals and individual counselling services available, and an online portal notifying students of various job and internship opportunities. Top recruiters come from all industries including tech, management consultancy, fashion and beauty, and investment banking. Over 94% of Bocconi graduates locate a job through the university or find themselves in another respected academic programme.
Bocconi has an international reputation as a leader in the fields of economics, management, finance, political science, data science and legal studies with a rank in the top 20 of the QS World Ranking 2021. Studying in Italy would be a unique and gratifying experience for Indian students: while it has all first-world conveniences and development, Italy never loses out on its millennia of culture and heritage.
(The author is Director – IMFS, Hyderabad Mail Id: email@example.com)